Portree Primary School- HOMEWORK POLICY
We recognise that in its broadest sense homework is any kind of learning which takes place out of school. However, for our purposes we will consider homework to be:
- Work set by teachers and completed at home within an agreed timescale.
- Work which reflects or develops class work and has clearly understood expectations regarding standards.
Through setting homework we aim to:
- Encourage independence and good learning habits.
- Consolidate work taught in school and therefore raise attainment levels.
- Encourage and provide opportunities for parents to become involved in children’s learning.
- Build pupil confidence by encouraging the discussion of school work and learning with parents.
- Encourage pupils to take responsibility for their own learning.
- Improve the organisational skills of pupils.
HOMEWORK DIARIES AND JOTTERS
Each pupil is assigned a homework diary to indicate the homework they have each night or over a weekly period. These should be checked by parents and signed as appropriate. From P4 onwards pupils will be responsible for updating their diaries. Teachers will periodically check how efficiently pupils are using their homework diaries. Diaries will also act as a communication tool for parents and class teachers.
Pupils will also be assigned a homework jotter which they are responsible for keeping in a good condition.
Class teachers will be given flexibility regarding what system and format they use for homework and this will be indicated in a letter at the start of term.
MAIN FEATURES OF HOMEWORK TASKS
The main focus and priority of homework tasks at PPS is literacy and numeracy with occasional work in other topic areas also covered. We understand that from time to time, it is difficult to complete all tasks. When this is the case, reading should be the priority and a short note in the diary from parents would be appreciated to give an update of what has been achieved.
Homework should always be clearly understood by pupils and pitched at an appropriate level which offers a degree of challenge but also allows for consolidation. Tasks on the whole should be able to be completed by pupils independently, with little if any parent help.
AT THE EARLY STAGES typical tasks will be:
- Discussion using pre reading books and/or practising pages of reading
- Reinforcing new words
- Reinforcing sounds perhaps using a worksheet
- Simple maths activities & multiplication tables
AT MIDDLE AND UPPER STAGES typical tasks will be:
- Reading practise
- Maths e.g. tables, telling time
FREQUENCY AND LENGTH OF TASKS
We are conscious of the fact that many of our pupils are involved in activities in the evening which are valuable to their education and overall development and wellbeing. Therefore, homework set should take no longer than 15 minutes per night at the early stages and 20 minutes at the upper stages.
Individual class teachers will give parents a clear outline of the homework expectations for their individual class at the start of each term. If pupils are struggling with homework in any way parents should contact class teachers to discuss this.
There may be differences in the expectations for homework within the EM department and the GM department.
It is also worth considering that younger children respond better to working in two or three short bursts rather than longer periods of concentration. It is important to pace homework over the course of the week.
Parents are also reminded that play is the foundation of all learning and any time spent playing games with children or being involved in role play situations is very valuable.
Homework grids for extra literacy and numeracy tasks are available here for those who wish. Any additional tasks can be sent in for class teachers to see but these will not be marked by school staff.
Recommendations for activities to support individual pupils’ progress can also be discussed at parents’ evenings, at other meet the teacher sessions or at meetings set up with teachers that have been arranged beforehand.
During December, when lots of festive activities are taking place only reading homework will be undertaken alongside any Christmas preparation activities, such a learning the words of songs or other Christmas Concert preparation.
Homework will also be reduced during the summer term, again with a focus on reading, in order to allow children to get outdoors to play and to be involved in extra- curricular activities.
Parents can support this policy and their children’s learning by showing interest in what they are learning and praising good effort.
If you would like to do extra homework activities, please find a grid of suggestions here